You may be thinking of making an application to gain care and control of/ access to your child under the Guardianship of Infants Act Singapore if:
- You are going through a separation/ divorce;
- Your spouse has left with your child; or
- Your spouse has denied you access to your child.
In my years of practice, I have seen many parents make applications under the Guardianship of Infants Act Singapore for interim care and control to their children.
When parents ask me about their chances of securing care and control to their children, I tend to ask them: “are you the primary care-giver to your child?”
If the answer is no, I am likely to probe further and ask: “how much time have you been spending with your child?”
The 2016 Marriage and Parenthood survey released on 8 July 2017 found that the bulk of childcare responsibilities rest with the mothers even though more fathers are sharing in childcare responsibilities and helping out in feeding and bathing young children and looking after the children when they fall ill.
However, mothers still spend more time on domestic chores (2.6 hours on an average weekday) compared to fathers (1.5 hours).
Fathers are getting involved as there are more dual income families in Singapore.
See: Janice Tai, “Dads are chipping in, but mums still do more: Marriage and Parenthood Survey 2016”, The Straits Times, 8 July 2017
Your chances of getting interim care and control depend on your involvement with the child. If you had been the primary care-giver of the child, and the child is highly reliant on you, your chances will naturally be higher.
On the other hand, if you are rarely involved in your child’s life, it will make little sense for the Court to change your child’s lifestyle (particularly if he/ she always been well-taken care of by your spouse) and award you sole care and control of your child.
The good thing is, regardless of which parent is having care and control, you will not be cut off from your child’s life. Access will still be granted to the parent not having care and control of the child.
Under the Guardianship of Infants Act, the welfare of a child is of paramount importance.
Contact us today for more information on the Guardianship of Infants Act.
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